Tuesday, March 13, 2012

More on the Trim

Decisions, decisions...the joy of being a home owner!

The hubs and I typically agree on how to update/paint/etc our home.  But, there's one major thing we are stuck on.

The trim.

We have vintage wood trim (unpainted) throughout the original part of the home and contemporary white trim throughout its newer additions.  I like white trim, the hubs likes the wood.  I think the wood makes the rooms it's in look dark and small, but he wants to protect the history of our home…le sigh.  I guess the wood trim will remain for now…

Here are some great examples of homes with beautiful painted trim. Colorful trim.  Not just white!  I don't know if I'm ready to stray from my white trim and wander into this colorful unknown, but it's fun to look at :)

What color is the trim in your home painted?

Images from Jay Jeffer's website: www.jeffersdesigngroup.com.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Little Things

We did it.
We bought 75 ft of base boards and crown molding for my office.
God be with us.
I've never never never "installed" trim. Is installed the right verb to use for that? I'm slightly nervous, but what the heck? It's just my office, the smallest room in the house after the half bath. And there's always a first time for everything!
We finished painting the walls in my office and next is the ceiling. Hopefully that will happen sooner than later. Then, it's on to the trim.
Have you ever installed crown molding or base boards? Any sage words of wisdom?

I thought I'd share with you some of the the home improvement/interior design blogs I follow. These are great resources for "remodel" tips and inspiration - not to mention the writers often include great money saving ideas! Check these out.

7th House on the Left
The Lettered Cottage
6th Street Design School
Caitlin Creer Interiors
The Cottage Mix
Tiek Built Homes

Happy browsing!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Wish List

Wish List

If you're a home owner, chances are you have a wish list.  Things that aren't essential and thus fall pretty low on the list of priorities.  My mom always used to tell me, "Wants come after needs."  These are things I want, but I really don't need - and the hubs and I aren't going to pull out the credit card to score these things!

That doesn't mean I can't imagine them as a part of my living room though, right?

The first is a leaning shelf (or two).  I like this one from Target.

I know a lot of people are more interested in "built-in" looking furniture right now, but our house already has built-ins.  I like the openness of the leaning shelves.  They're easy to angle as well, which is how most of the furniture in our house is placed. On angles. We don't have a ton of furniture but we do have a ton of house, so placing furniture across corners in rooms makes them feel better anchored.  I'd like to see this replace our Billy bookcases from Ikea.  Which is why we don't actually need them- we already have bookcases!

The second is a leather chair.  This one is from World Market and reclines, which would mean no ottoman is needed.

Our living room is huge. It was an addition to the back of the house, built some time around 1980 (we think). On one side is our sectional (a major score from Craigslist), tv console, tv, etc. The room is split into "two sections" by our sliding glass door and a large opening into the kitchen. On the other side of the room, there is...well, most of the year, nothing. Our Christmas tree was there, but now it's pretty sparse. We have a large Billy bookshelf there, but the opposing corner is empty. A chair would be a great addition to our addition :) 

Another thing is a side table for the leather chair.  I'd love something similar to our Era table from Crate and Barrel, but none of their current side tables are just what I'm looking for.  The Era C table is close, but it doesn't have a glass top to match the Era table.

Why, CB?
This table from Target is way cheaper.  It doesn't have a glass top either, but I imagine it wouldn't be too hard to switch the wood out with a glass slab.

Next - some dining room chairs.  We have a few, but they don't really match.  They're birch and our table and bench (made by hubs) are stained walnut brown.  But we do have some.  I could sand and stain them.  So we don't need these. But, I like the Cabria honey brown woven side chair and arm chair from Crate and Barrel.  Forget the cushions - I could make those or get them anywhere.  I think two of these at the ends (or heads?) of the table and two on the side opposing the bench would look nice.

So, if you give a mouse a cookie…
How about a rug to go in that dining room? I like this one from Crate and Barrel and it matches my place mats…and at $200 for 8ft by 10ft? Score again!

There are several more things I can think of…but ya know. I don't want this to go on forever. I think the last thing I'd like to have in the house are a bunch of these bad boys:

We have 15 windows on the first floor of our house alone (we bought white wood slate "blinds" for the four windows upstairs when we did our master bedroom overhaul in August). Only one of the downstairs windows has a covering with which I am happy. And it's a bamboo Roman shade! So classy. I'm thinking we could try buying one or two shades per paycheck and get the windows "treated".  Home Depot and Lowe's have great selections of bamboo Roman shades.

Do you have a wish list? How did you manage to furnish your first home?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Some Happenings

So, what did you do for Valentine's day? Did you pick up a box of chocolates, some roses, go out to dinner? My husband and I are having a low-key Valentine's day today because we're going to San Francisco this weekend to really celebrate ;)
I know there's a lot of dispute over whether or not to actually take part in Valentine's Day and it makes me a little sad. I'll make any excuse I can to make a day extra special and something to celebrate. Even when I was single, my friends and I would go out or get each other something sweet for Valentine's. Ya, I realize it's become a commercial phenomena and people spend crazy amounts of money to celebrate the day. And it is 'single's awareness day' or whatever. Understandably, those without a 'special someone' could feel left out or lonely on Feb 14. It doesn't have to be like that though. Let me hit you with some fresh perspective: why not take this day to make the people you love feel extra special? And no, I don't mean just a boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife. Anyone you love. You're family and friends. Brighten their day today and be intentional about it. For example, I'm taking these into the office today:
Just because it's a way to celebrate.
Not to say we should't celebrate one another every day. I think Valentine's Day has been abused by the slackers who only show affection on this day. Make every day special! But, why not go out to dinner or put on something extra special for your hubs ;) just because it's Valentine's Day?

Off the soap box :)

The hubs and I have made a few additions to the living room as of late.  We are almost done furnishing this room (except for a few poang chairs from Ikea left over from his bachelor days - I want to replace them with a leather chair eventually :) ). We picked up a new tv at Best Buy and a tv console from Crate and Barrel. Both were a steal, though I don't really know the details of the true awesomeness of the tv- that's something for J to attest to. I do know how great of a deal we got on the console though.
We love Crate and Barrel. We are especially fond of their sales and floor sample pieces.  Our bedding was a Crate and Barrel floor sample and we got it for $45. Let me repeat, $45! It was originally $150ish for the set. Mmmhmm. 
The console was also a floor sample.  There were several scratches in it, but they were nothing a little Old English Scratch Cover couldn't handle! And considering it was originally priced at $499.00 and we walked away with it for $230 (then less because of all our left over wedding gift cards), I wasn't passing it up because of a few scratches. The price went from $499 to $425 to $349 then $309 to $279 and finally $230. We paid $70 out of pocket for it. Woohoo! And here it is:

Again, sorry for the terrible pictures. Just rockin' the iPhone. The middle picture shows just how well the scratches were hidden with the Scratch Cover. Love that stuff.
We are really happy with it.  We wanted a console that was about  50 inches long and at least 20 inches deep to accommodate the 47 inch tv. The glass "windows" in the console doors also tie in with our coffee table (also a steal from Crate and Barrel for $30) and the wood in the rest of the room. Here's the design board:

We also have some curtains and pillows, but I'm hoping we'll be adding to these soon. As soon as I figure out my sewing machine - but that's for another day. The stools are no longer carried at Ikea in birch like the ones we have, but they're really useful as extra side tables or foot rests :) or step stools, though I really can't say that's the safest thing to use them for... Our couch is also discontinued, originally from Scandinavian Designs and very similar to this section from C&B.

Thanks for checking in! Hope you had a great Valentine's Day.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

2012 Home Goals

Happy 2012!

J and I have lots of projects to post about here from 2011 (some of which are dragging over into the new year, but such is the life of a homeowner).  We designed and built a row of closets in our master bedroom, replaced the builder grade blinds in our master bedroom, painted, decorated, started landscaping, gutted furniture, built furniture, etc… Posts should be written about these accomplishments and there's even some talk of J contributing here :) We still have lots we want to do this year, so wish us luck on our list:

Paint the downstairs
Our whole house was one color when we first moved in (yes, even the ceilings). Not just any color, but a semi-gross creamy yellow. We've painted only the upstairs and the guest room so far, but have plans for the remaining 7 rooms…yes, 7 other rooms. Talk about work.
Finish treating the windows
Organize closet spaces
Add shelves and hooks to maximize storage space
Sell unused furniture and buy new furniture

That's the list so far.  Chances are it will keep growing :) We do have 3 paint colors picked out for the house from Behr: Indulgent Mocha, Swiss Coffee and Tidewater (a Martha Steward color matched to Behr). Hopefully we can buy a huge 5-gallon thing of each and use them throughout the house.

What are your goals this year?

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Lost Type

So a few months ago a friend introduced me to Lost Type Co-op, a great design resource and my new favorite place for inspiration. There are a ton of fonts there to choose from and the best part is that you can see how the creators use the fonts or how other designers have implemented them into their work. My friend used a few of the featured fonts on our rehearsal dinner invites:

and I've been using a few for different looks at work

Check it out when you have the chance!

Monday, December 5, 2011

An Accidental Pet

So, we have a new buddy hanging out around the house these days…

Meet Dr. Cat, a "neighborhood" cat (aka stray) who started hanging out on our front porch a few months ago. He comes inside every once and a while. We've taken to feeding him and looking out for him. I'd say he's at least 8 years old. He a great tomcat who purrs and drools when happy. We keep lots of rags handy :) And he has the cutest meow - the hubs has taken to imitating it.
A neighbor told us he was brought down her by a girl up the street and her boyfriend when they moved to California from Seattle. I guess she thought he was a stray then, too. Turns out she was mistaken, though - Dr. Cat's been spayed/neutered and declawed. Definitely belonged to somebody up there in Seattle. Poor guy's been braving the streets ever since! I hope to have him taken to a vet soon to check him for basic problems before we get our kitten later this month so he can still spend some time inside with us. Otherwise, the porch will be his home.
Another habit of his that tipped me off to thinking he was a house cat is his constant need to snuggle up. He always wants to get on the sofa and cuddle on your lap or he'll sneak upstairs and get in our bed when we're making dinner (which is so off limits to our stray friend). He loves blankets.
Sure, having an outdoor cat spend some time inside with us requires extra vacuuming and hand washing, but he's the sweetest thing. I think it's worth it. Hopefully he gets a clean bill of health and we can keep him around for the long run.